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News Release | Environment Texas

New Rules on Environmental Reviews and Fishing Could Help Gulf of Mexico and Fish Rebound

Houston, Texas— Federal data show that in 2007 nearly three out of ten Gulf of Mexico fish species for which there is adequate information were overfished or were caught faster than they can reproduce, a condition known as overfishing. For 67 percent (36 out of 54) of the species in the Gulf that the federal government oversees there is not enough information to know whether the populations are healthy or not, according to a report released by Environment Texas today.

“With depleted numbers of red snapper and great amberjack, declining loggerhead sea turtle populations, and an annual dead zone, the Gulf of Mexico is in trouble,” said Luke Metzger, Director of Environment Texas. “It’s very troubling that almost thirty percent of the Gulf’s fish species are overfished. But even worse news is that we only know how healthy a third of our fish are at best. We are fishing blind on the other two thirds.”

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News Release | Environment Texas

Businesses, Environmental Groups Join To Protect Menhaden

The Save the Bait Coalition today called on the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission (TPW) to protect what has been called “the most important fish in the sea” in Texas’ coastal waters.   A diverse coalition of businesses and advocacy groups is seeking a science-based catch limit, observers to document wasteful fishing practices, and accountability measures to make sure catch limits are not exceeded for menhaden, a primary prey fish for finfish, seabirds, and dolphins.

The coalition is also asking the Texas state government to push for a Gulf-wide scientific assessment of menhaden that includes the important role the fish plays as prey for predators and as a “dead zone” fighting filter feeder.  “With this assessment Texas can set a science-based catch limit that ensures enough menhaden are left in the water to feed predators and Texas’ bays and estuaries have clean water,” said Luke Metzger the Director of Environment Texas.

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Report | Environment Texas

Troubled Waters 2007

October 18, 2007 marks the 35th anniversary of the Clean Water Act, a landmark law intended to restore and maintain the physical, chemical and biological integrity of the nation’s waters. In passing the Clean Water Act, Congress set the goals of eliminating the discharge of pollutants into the nation’s waterways by 1985 and making all U.S. waterways fishable and swimmable by 1983. Although we have made significant progress in improving water quality since the passage of the Clean Water Act, we are far from realizing the Act’s original vision.

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Report | Environment Texas

Worth More Wild: The Value of Texas' Roadless National Forests

After decades of scientific inquiry, 600 public hearings, and a record 1.6 million comments from the American public, the Clinton administration issued the Roadless Area Conservation Rule in January 2001. The Roadless Rule, as it is commonly known, originally protected 58.5 million acres of wild national forest land from most commercial logging and road-building, and associated mining and drilling. Since then, the Bush administration has removed these protections from 9.5 million acres of roadless areas in the Tongass National Forest.

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Report | Environment Texas

Reaping the Rewards

Renewable energy in the United States is on the rise. America now generates twice as much electricity from the wind and the sun as we did just four years ago, and 2007 promises to be another year of record growth.

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